How Do You Pick Mutual Fund for Your Portfolio?

by David Ning · 7 comments

It may seem shocking after just a few short years from the greatest market panic of our lifetime but major stock market indices are hitting new highs almost on a daily basis these days. Are you thinking of adding to your investment portfolio? Are mutual funds part of your strategy? FutureAdvisor helped me put together this simple infographic listing a few key points you’ll want to remember about mutual fund selection by digging deep into their 401k database.

Take a look below:

How to Pick Mutual Funds Infographic

It’s hard to argue with the data when low fees correlate so strongly with high returns across so many different asset classes. Next time you look for a mutual fund, make sure to put fees amongst the very top of your priority list. Remember, the less Wall Street charges you, the more you keep!

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They developed this pretty nifty 401K Fee Analyzer that will show you whether you are paying too much in fees, as well as an Investment Checkup tool to help determine whether your asset allocation fits your risk profile. The platform literally takes a few minutes to sign up and it's free to use by following this link here. For those trying to build wealth, Personal Capital is worth a look.

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{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Steve May 19, 2013 at 8:33 am

Besides fees having an impact on returns, investors trying to get in and out of funds at what they think is the right time kills returns as well. This behavior is a major reason for underperformance. Read the Dalbar study on this. The average investor in mutual funds gets less than half the return of the funds over all measured 20 year periods they studied. Why? They buy high (5 star funds) and sell low.
Best may be to buy low cost index funds and leave it alone. Most active funds do not beat the market over long periods of time.


Debt Blag May 20, 2013 at 5:46 am

I like this a lot. Cuts down the research I’d have to do to feel comfortable with my decisions pretty significantly :)


John S @ Frugal Rules May 20, 2013 at 5:52 am

Good inforgraphic! Way too many investors fail to look at the fees when they’re looking to invest in a mutual fund. They think it does not make that much of a difference. However, those fees do add up greatly over time. The difference between a low fee fund and one that is well over 1% can be huge over time.


Property Marbella May 23, 2013 at 1:52 am

I have not put my money in some high-risk funds, but in stable and old firms in international trade industries like engineering industry and hotels. The return and fees shall be relevant to each other.


Anton Ivanov | Dreams Cash True May 25, 2013 at 10:26 am

There is a very simple logic behind why picking funds with the lower expense ratios usually results in better returns. Funds with low expense ratios are more than likely index funds, and index funds have been shown time and time again to outperform active funds in the long term.

So this strategy can be rephrased to say – focus only on index funds with low expense ratios and ignore all the other junk.


Britt May 1, 2015 at 11:36 am

… and keep in mind that your broker makes his living off of getting you to trade in many instances!


Jake Forest September 11, 2013 at 2:44 pm

Anton is exactly right. Index investing is your best option.

PBS Frontline did a great investigative report on this a few months ago. You can watch the whole episode at


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